‘Donald Trump acts like a new Hitler’ – Anne Frank’s stepsister
Schloss, 86, who lives in London, told Newsweek magazine she sees similarities between Nazi leader Adolf Hitler and billionaire Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump.
She and Anne Frank played together as refugee children in Amsterdam before their families were forced into hiding. The diaries written by Frank from her hiding place are famous worldwide as an example of a teenage girl’s poignant response to Nazi tyranny.
While Frank was one of the hundreds of thousands of people who died in the Holocaust, in the notorious Bergen-Belsen death camp, Schloss survived Auschwitz. After the war, Frank’s father married Schloss’s mother.
Ahead of the key test for Trump in the February 1 Iowa caucuses, Schloss chose the occasion of Wednesday’s Holocaust Remembrance Day to say it would be a disaster to elect him US president.
“If Donald Trump becomes the next president of the US, it would be a complete disaster,” Schloss said. “I think he is acting like another Hitler by inciting racism.”
Schloss also criticized the US for not taking its share of refugees and compared the current crisis to the one preceding the Holocaust.
“This is not just a European problem, it’s a global problem,” she said.
“If countries as big as the US and Canada would take in more people, then we would get much closer to a solution.”
She said the current disunity between powerful nation states presents a threat to stability.
“The situation today is worse than it was under Hitler because at that time all the Allies – the US, Russia and Britain – worked together to combat the terrible threat of Nazism.”
Schloss also reflected on her experiences of fleeing across Europe in search of a safe haven to highlight the problems faced by refugees today.
“I was 11 years old when my family first immigrated to Belgium [after Hitler annexed Austria in 1938]. We were treated as if we had come from the moon. I felt as if I wasn’t wanted and that I was different to everybody.”
“It is even harder for today’s Syrian refugees who have a very different culture. We were Europeans as well as Jews – we were assimilated. I was shocked that I wasn’t accepted like an ordinary person.”
Schloss, who is a co-founder of the Anne Frank Trust, said the theme of this year’s remembrance was “Don’t stand by.”
“I am very upset that today again so many countries are closing their borders. Fewer people would have died in the Holocaust if the world had accepted more Jewish refugees,” she said.